Well hello there! Long time no see. Hope you are all well.
I disappeared for a while because my Mom was diagnosed with aggressive late stage stomach cancer 🙁 Her whole stomach is now removed & she will need chemo going forward. I’ve been & will be on filial duty for a while. Unfortunately she’s on the other side of the world. So not much sewing is going to get done rest of this year. But here is one last project I managed to finish while my siblings take over for a couple of weeks.
This project was part of my Fix/Finish It June-July sewing plan. I had already finished all the machine work by the time I learnt about my Mom’s illness. I did consider taking the hand sewing with me. But it was just as well I didn’t, since trying to understand & speak Chinese all day long left me unfit to do anything else.
The Inspiration & Design
Now the Tunic is another classic that deserves a place in almost everyone’s wardrobe. I like the vaguely ethnic variety. My starting inspiration for turning this muslin into a tunic was Burda 2013-02-121 Flared Tunic. What would you call this – Moroccan?
I also collected a bunch of other examples – both what I don’t like & what I do like. Sometimes it’s useful to compare the two to figure out what makes or breaks a design.
Mine ends up being a mishmash of the Burda original and the swirly soutache designs. The design details were made up as I went along, testing different ribbons & soutache/Russia Braid arrangements.
Style Shots & Mug Shots
- Block: Self-drafted Tunic Block
- Design changes:
- Enlarged neckline: CB 0″ lower – Sides 1″ wider – CF 2″ lower.
- Lengths used: Bodice bum length, Sleeves wrist length.
- Widen sleeve hems by 7″ total, tapering to nothing at mid upper arm.
- Added CF slit: Measured same 2-1/2″ up from my Block’s waistline as on Burda 2013-02-121 for bottom of slit.
- Added side seam slits: Measured same 7″ up from hem as on Burda 2013-02-121 for top of slits.
Fabric & Notions Used
- Linen/Cotton from Tissu Fabrics
- Woven interfacing for front slit facing, self-fabric for neckline bias binding/facing.
- Berisford Polyester Grosgrain Ribbon 16mm & 6mm in Cream (9627) from eBay styler70.
- Viscose Russia Braid/Soutache Cord 3mm in Light Beige from eBay aggaeggart.
- 1/2″ flat buttons.
- I mostly followed the instruction for Burda 2013-02-121 with the following key exceptions:
- My fabric was too heavy to make spaghetti button loops. So I used the soutache cord for the loops & hand-sewn this along with the flat buttons to the inside of the CF slits after rest of the tunic was done.
- CF ribbon trims were stitched before the neckline seam so that the ends of the ribbons would be hidden in the neckline seam.
- Sleeve & bodice hem trims were stitched before the hems were turn inside, again for a tidier inside finish.
- The soutache embellishment were sewn by hand. I tried machine-stitching this as shown in this YouTube video, but found mine a bit too skinny, stretchy & otherwise unwieldy. I will try again some day on another project maybe with a wider soutache…
Somehow my tunic ends up also looking vaguely Chinese. I guess there is no escaping my DNA eh? 🙂
I’m fairly happy with the result though. Now I just need some bottoms to go with the tunic. Maybe it’s time to venture into trousers/pants making? OK, maybe next year. Mom comes first.